Jesus Lived, Died, and Rose from the Grave
Open Your Bible
John 3:16-17, Matthew 15:29-31, Luke 18:31-33, John 19:28-30, Romans 5:6-11, Philippians 2:5-11
Scripture Reading: John 3:16-17, Matthew 15:29-31, Luke 18:31-33; John 19:28-30; Romans 5:6-11; Philippians 2:5-11
This is the big show. This is the central truth of our faith. We can quibble over infant baptism and transubstantiation and ordination, but on these points all Christians must come together and agree. God came to earth in the form of a man, and this God-Man lived, died, and rose from the grave. They called Him Jesus. While we were helpless and lost in our sin, Jesus died to save us completely (Romans 5:6).
It is the truest and most real fairy story ever known. The Church is the princess trapped by the pretending ruler of this world: a dragon who seeks to hoard all he can. The hero slays the dragon once and for all though a mighty and earth-shaking sacrifice. The dragon vanquished, the hero rescues the princess and brings her to his beautiful home. And they literally live happily ever after.
Notice who’s who in this story. We are the Church and the princess: the bride of Christ. What does the princess have to do to make the story come off properly? The answer is… nothing.
We’d like to think we get to play a champion’s role in the story, but no matter how politically incorrect it may be, we, the bride, are helpless. The princess does not slay the dragon. She awaits the coming of her prince, the hero who will save her.
As unflattering as it is, we are helpless apart from Christ. If that weren’t enough to make us uncomfortable, Paul reminds us we were also ungodly enemies of God, undeserving of rescue (Romans 5:10). The Church is the the beggar bride, who has gotten overly comfortable living with the dragon. It is Christ who makes us holy, Christ who makes us lovely, Christ who washes us clean and removes the dragonish stench from our garments, preparing us for His kingdom.
By His life, He emptied Himself of glory, walking in perfect righteousness and enduring every earthly sorrow. By His death, He fully satisfied God’s just wrath against us, washing away our every sin.
By His resurrection, He defeated death and hell and secured newness of life for those who believe.
By His ascension, He advocates for us before the throne of grace, guaranteeing our eternal inheritance.
The great story of the gospel is the story of Christ. His life and death, His resurrection and ascension—this is the gospel. He is the gospel. Thanks be to God.
Rebecca Faires loves the gospel story and needs it every morning when she wakes up to her five little people. Rebecca holds a bachelor’s degree in German from Hillsdale College, and most recently worked as managing editor at She Reads Truth. She now works from her log cabin in the hills of Tennessee, writing and illustrating books with her favorite mountain man. There she enjoys porch-sitting as it rains, reading the Oxford English Dictionary, and getting in way over her head. She is expecting her sixth baby and her first book in February of 2019.